2022 Aprilia Tuareg 660: a welcome resurrection on an adventure bike

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The growth in sales of adventure and dual sport motorcycles is matched only by the number of new models entering the market these days. From Harley-Davidson to Husqvarna, more and more motorcycle brands are getting into the ADV game. And now it’s Aprilia’s turn to market an adventure bike. Or rather, come back, because the Aprilia Tuareg 660 2022 is not the company’s first all-terrain model. However, the new Touareg is more than just a name.

Aprilia reincarnates its iconic Tuareg adventure bike with the help of the RS 660

2022 Aprilia Touareg 660 Indaco Tagelmust side view | Piaggio

2022 Aprilia Touareg 660
Motor Liquid-cooled 660cc parallel twin
Power 80 hp
Couple 52 lb-ft
Transmission Six-speed manual with slip clutch
Front suspension and travel 43mm fully adjustable Kayaba inverted fork; 9.4 “
Rear suspension and travel Fully adjustable Kayaba monoshock; 9.4 “
Seat height 33.9 ″
Unloaded weight 449 pounds
Price $ 11,999 (basic)
$ 12,599 (Indaco Tagelmust)

Although the Aprilia Tuareg 660 is new for 2022, it is not the first adventure bike to bear this name. It first appeared on a 1980s motorcycle that took part in the Paris-Dakar rally, Motorcyclist Explain. But while the original Touareg gave birth to the ’90s Pegaso, Aprilia hasn’t offered an adventure bike since the early 2000s.

Thus, the Touareg 660 2022 has big shoes to fill. Fortunately, at least on paper, he’s well equipped for the job.

The “660” in the Aprilia Tuareg 660 2022 name refers to its engine, which originates from the RS 660 sports bike. However, the Tuareg version of the parallel twin is significantly different. For one thing, while it is increasing by 3 lb-ft, it is down by around 20 horsepower. But as peak horsepower is dropping, the Touareg makes significantly more torque lower in its rev range, RevZilla said. And that’s more important for off-roading. The same goes for the new airbox with its easily accessible filter.

The changes don’t stop there, however. The Aprilia Tuareg 660 2022 has different gear ratios than the RS 660 for better acceleration at low speeds. Its 660cc engine also has a different crankcase to increase ground clearance up to 9.5 “. In addition, although the Touareg 660’s engine is still a stressed part of its frame, it is mounted under a different angle. Plus, it’s mounted in six places instead of the two like in the RS. And speaking of the frame, the Touareg has a unique steel trellis.

Aprilia prepares the 2022 Touareg 660 for on- and off-road adventures

The rear 3/4 view of a 2022 black and yellow Aprilia Touareg 660

2022 Aprilia Touareg 660 3/4 rear view | Piaggio

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Because the Aprilia Tuareg 660 2022 does not have an IMU, it lacks improved ABS and traction control when cornering. But it has cruise control as well as adjustable ABS, traction control and engine brake control. In addition, several driving modes, including an all-terrain. And they are controlled via the 5 inch TFT screen with Bluetooth connectivity.

The off-road riding mode isn’t the only dirt-focused feature Aprilia brings to the 2022 Touareg 660. It also has dual metal skid plates, plastic hand guards, and wire wheels. wrapped in Pirelli Scorpion Rally STR tires. In addition, LED fog lights, a center stand and an optional electronic quickshifter. In addition, the rear brake pedal is adjustable and the serrated footrests have removable rubber inserts.

And because adventure bikes are touring bikes too, Aprilia offers optional accessories suitable for long-distance riders. The catalog includes items such as a larger windshield, heated grips, comfort seats, handlebar risers and aluminum housings. Also, what “Indaco Tagelmust” noted earlier? “Indaco” means “indigo” in Italian, while “tagelmust” is the name of the headdresses worn by the Tuaregs. On the Aprilia it refers to the optional blue paint scheme.

“Don’t make a mistake,” Motorcyclist said, this ADV is the real deal

A rider dressed in blue and red slides a 2022 Aprilia Touareg 660 at the edge of a sandy lake

2022 Aprilia Touareg 660 front view | Piaggio

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Some adventure bikes are arguably closer to dual sport bikes than touring bikes in terms of design and overall feel. Given that ADVs were in their infancy in the 1980s, the original Aprilia Touareg was arguably closer to a dual sport, RevZilla muses. And in fact, Aprilia positioned the 2022 Touareg 600 somewhere between legal enduros / dual-sports and complete adventure bikes.

But intention is one thing; execution is another. So how do the resurrected Tuaregs resist when the rubber meets the road? Uh, dirt?

The short answer is pretty good. The Aprilia Tuareg 660 2022 gives the impression of having over 660 cc in the way it delivers power and torque, Motorcyclist reports. No matter what gear you are in, this bike pulls hard. And the off-road mode offers easy-to-modulate power output, ideal for off-road driving.

The downside to the additional motor mounting points is more vibration, although it never reaches oppressive levels, RevZilla said. But the advantage is excellent cornering, smooth handling and great stability on paved roads. And while the long-travel suspension typically dips under street braking, that doesn’t happen with the Aprilia. The Italian adventure bike also avoids the slow, sluggish steering that sometimes accompanies the large front wheels. All in all, the Aprilia Touareg 660 “is a real pleasure on the road”, RevZilla reports.

And the fun doesn’t end when the sidewalk ends. The low seat height, fairly low curb weight and solid ergonomics make the Touareg 660 easy to ride off-road. Smaller riders will not feel like they are rocking, even when standing on the footrests, Motorcyclist said. Add to that the excellent steering feedback, well-damped suspension, and all-terrain tires, and you’ve got an incredibly accessible ADV. While some bikers may want to acquire tank grips, RevZilla adds.

Is the Aprilia Touareg 660 2022 worth considering compared to its competitors?

A 2021 Yamaha Ténéré 700 black-silver and blue in the desert

2021 Yamaha Ténéré 700 | Yamaha

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In short, the Aprilia Touareg 660 2022 has many advantages. But how does it stack up against its adventure bike competitors?

The closest rival to the new Aprilia adventure bike is the Yamaha Ténéré 700. At $ 9,999, it’s cheaper than the Touareg 660. But although it weighs about the same weight, the Yamaha loses 12 hp despite a bigger engine. It also has less suspension travel and less functionality. Also, while the Touareg 660’s quickshifter isn’t as smooth as the RS’s, it’s at least available on the Aprilia. And it’s the best off-road and on-road bike, RevZilla complaints.

There’s also the $ 13,099 KTM 890 Adventure to consider. Its 889cc parallel-twin delivers 103 hp and comes standard with enhanced cornering safety features as well as a steering damper. However, it has less suspension travel than the Aprilia. And some of the standard Touareg features are optional on the 890 Adventure. In addition, the KTM is arguably less impressive off-road than the Aprilia, RevZilla said.

So, hats – or rather headdresses – to Aprilia for having resuscitated the Tuaregs to the height of their ancestors. And if you’re up for the adventure, it will arrive in U.S. dealerships in February 2022.

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